Embattled businessman Bakang Seretse and his co-accused Botho Leburu and Kenneth Kerekang heaved a sigh of relief on Friday morning when Broadhurst Regional Magistrate court relaxed their bail conditions.
Court ordered that the trio be issued with their travel documents, albeit temporarily to facilitate their trips outside the country. However, they must return the documents upon their arrival back in the country. Their travel documents and property were confiscated by state security agents investigating allegations into money laundering in relation to P250 million taken from the National Petroleum Fund (NPF). Khulaco Pty (LTD), a company which Seretse was listed as its Director was the transactional agents on behalf of the Directorate on Intelligence and Security Services (DISS). The trio has been charged with money laundering.
The attorney representing the trio, Kgosietsile Ngakaagae, has since March been fighting to have his clients' passports returned, questioning the logic and fairness of allowing other culprits involved in the NPF transactions to walk free. He argued that it is hypocritical for the state to restrict their freedom of movement on grounds that they may interfere with investigations while those who disbursed the funds are free and have not been charged or put under the same restrictions. Although the Investigating Officer in the case had previously claimed that Seretse had deposited money in foreign accounts, he failed to give evidence to support to the allegation.
Ngakaagae specifically cited former Director General of DISS Isaac Kgosi and former Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Mineral Resources, Green Technology and Energy Security Dr Obolokile Obakeng who authorised the variations into NPF funds.
The DISS had requested the money to build storage facilities across the country but the spy agency later asked for variation to buy spy equipment from Israel, which was authorised by the then Acting Permanent Secretary in the Minerals and Energy Ministry, Dr Obolokile Obakeng.